Pod Casts are remarkable tools that are often overlooked by Internet Marketers. Before getting into how to use podcasts to develop your brand, it is important that readers understand what podcasts are, and how they are beneficial to marketing. In the following paragraphs are the outlines of what a pod cast is, how they are used in marketing as well as some of the tips that readers can use to create their own podcasts.
What is Branding?
Branding is the recognition of an idea, company, or product by people or consumers. On the Internet, branding can be described as a beacon that draws readers, consumers, and web surfers to a particular point of interest.
How Can PodCasts Be Used to Target An Audience?
Consider for a moment the way that consumers interact with the technology. We watch video, we read blogs, we listen to music, we use touch screens, iPods, video games, websites, all of which are technology. What this equates to is visual and audio communication. This is important because not everybody interacts with the Internet in the same way. Some people watch videos or listen to music while they commute to work. Some people read blogs while they commute to work, or are at work or maybe when they are home.
I think back to when I was ten years old. I had a list of yard chores that I had to do each week. Each week that list of chores conflicted with my other passion in life – Soccer. What I wanted to do was sit in front of the television and watch the soccer game; however, I could not do that and get my chores done. My dad bought me a portable radio and showed me that I could do both. So I listened to the game and raked the leaves off the lawn. This is the very appeal to podcasts because many people do not have the time to watch a visual presentation, but they can listen. As an Internet marketer, podcasts represent the segment of your business’s market that can not watch but that can listen. This is why podcasts are a vital part of marketing. They allow your marketing plan to reach every segment of your marketing audience.
Branding or development of a brand is important for any business, but especially for businesses that are primary Internet based. The beautiful part of using podcasts to help build your brand is that they allow you to reach an audience that would otherwise not be able to view a video or read a blog. People who drive to work can listen to a pod cast, but should not watch a video.
What is A Pod Cast?
A pod cast is a recorded message that listeners subscribe to either by direct download or via RSS feed. A pod cast is as much an advertisement as it is a tool used for learning or teaching. The difference between an informational-commercial and a pod cast is that your listener has chosen to participate in the process. They have chosen to listen to your audio presentation. A radio commercial is forced upon listeners who have come to listen to music. The fact that listens choose to listen to a pod cast is why podcasts are vital to Internet marketing.
Why is Pod Casting Important For developing Your Brand?
There are several reasons why PodCasts are important for developing your brand. The first is that podcasts are audio, and therefore, can reach the segment of your audience that is not able to view or visually participate in a conversation about your products. Secondly, the audience for a pod cast is already interested in the topic. They have chosen to participate which is very different from any other form of audio presentation. Not only do podcasts make your information available to consumers who can listen, but also to people who are interested in your topic. This translates into a motivated audience. Motivation is halfway to achieving conversion and sales.
How Do you Use PodCasts To Develop Your Brand?
It is fairly safe to say that because listeners subscribe to a pod cast that they are already somewhat informed about the topic. So the better question to ask is what are listeners hoping to find. The answers to that question are tools. Tools that the listenr can use to further their projects. A goal of someone trying to develop their brand is to increase exposure to products and service. In a Pod Cast, that means offering knowledge and tools such as products. This means redirecting listeners back to a website, where information can be presented visually or where consumers can click links to purchase products. Podcasts are also helpful tools because they can help direct visitors to a website. The key to developing branding is increased exposure of the brand across many venues. This means that much like a successful marketing blog, multiple podcasts can be designed around a single topic. Each pod cast becomes a supporting member of a marketing plan which surrounds a single product, service or idea. Each podcasts works independently, yet joins and supports other podcasts within that group of podcasts. Pod Cast’s can also be used to support other tools within your marketing plan.
Different Venues Represent Different Fans, Readers, and Followers:
Take advantage of listening opportunities by building podcasts. People can listen while they commute to work when they can not watch a video. The power of PodCasts is that listening to a Pod Cast is the choice of the individual. PodCasts provide an excellent opportunity to listeners and to Internet marketers because they allow the listener to have a continual verbal chain of communication with the marketer on a regular basis. Think about people who go to church each Sunday. They go to listen to a sermon. It is a regular listening engagement that the audience chooses to be a participant. This is the same principle that my father used when he gave me a radio that allowed me to do my chores and still listen to the soccer game. Over time, that became a routine for me. I did my chores while the soccer game was on the radio. Like the soccer game or the sermon, what is being said must be engaging to the listener. Lets take a look at some of the tips that can help marketers develop engaging podCasts.
Making A Pod Cast:
The idea behind making a pod cast is to produce an audio dialogue that conveys a message to a targeted audience. This is much like making a speech without being present or having to stand up in front of a group of people. PodCasts are simple. They do not have visual assistance from charts, pictures, or physical demonstrations of a product. They are simply words that are spoken. This is a critical piece of information, because to use a pod cast effectively in marketing means that your message must be crystal clear. The only tool you have to convince your audience is your voice.
Fortunately for all of us, there are many products available that will allow you to create and edit and refine podcasts. Many of those tools are available for free from companies like Apple.
Plan What You are going To Say:
Very few people are so interesting that they can just stand at a microphone and ramble on about a subject and still keep their audience entertained. It is important that a Pod Cast be planned out. If the pod cast uses a visual than plan for that as well. Today’s technology offers the use of video and sometimes images in podcasts.
Writing the Pod Cast:
Develop the message and present it in a few different ways. Every great speech that has been given has had a beginning, a middle and an end. PodCasts are no different. Introduce yourself to your audience, outline what you are going to talk about, develop your points of interest and relate those points of interests to your audience through real life experiences.
Tip: Sometimes it is professional to use a different person to record the introduction. This would be very true of a guest posting position or even an interview.
The Introduction should not only be about introducing the subject/topic, but also should include a bit about who you are and why you are qualified to discuss the topic. Consider including something personal that listeners can relate too.
Example: I was the co-host of BlogsRus.com for several years. My Job was to produce blog topics with suitable keyword/key phrases that supported the marketing plan for X, Y, and Z products. Now; however, I am a work at home dad raising my daughter while developing my own company Dynamite Marketing Online. Today’s Pod Cast is a discussion of the value of audio marketing and how audio marketing can help to build your brand.
This introduction lists my qualifications, my personal information while introducing the topic.
The middle section should expand the topic into a conversation that includes examples. An example that could fit into the middle could be the example I used earlier about the radio and soccer. The middle section of an audio cast should be made up of all of the points that you want to talk about. This included the “Hook” or the object that grabs the listener. This section could contain all of the key points and ideas.
TIP: Write out the entire script and read it out loud several times before trying to record it. The recording process allows for easy editing; still, practice makes perfect. Once you have a recording listen to the recording a few times before publishing it.
The ending is a summary that links the beginning and middle together. It is a last opportunity to make specific points that are simple, but important. The ending should also contain a notation of thanks to the listener as well as a plug to find your website, etc.
TIP: Remind readers that they can ask questions through your blog or website or even through a social media outlet such as Facebook or Google +. If this is a guest post, the closing reminder to listeners can be done by someone else.
How To Get Started Using PodCasts:
A great attribute to using podcasts in marketing is that there is not much equipment to buy or install because all that you need is a microphone that is compatible with your computer.
TIP: A quality mic will help your readers hear and understand what you are saying. Take the time to research microphones because the difference between a bad recording and a work of art may boil down to just the microphone.
There are several programs available that will enable you to record your voice. Audacity has become one of the most popular programs to create and edit your podcasts. The Audacity software is downloadable and easy to install on either a PC or a Mac. This is a free to download and is also an open source product.
Once the Program is downloaded and installed, simply click the record button and begin recording your pod cast. Yes, it is just that easy. The program also allows users to edit their work, which makes it easy to product a professional sounding pod cast.
TIP: Add music in the background of your introduction and/or conclusion to give your pod cast a professional sound.
Skype is an awesome tool also because it allows marketers to create an interview with anyone around the globe. A secondary program is used to capture the conversation which can then be edited using Audacity. The secondary windows program used to capture Skype conversations is Virtual Audio Cable. The Secondary Mac program used to capture Skype conversations is Audio Hijack Pro.
Converting Your Pod Cast:
In the old days, you had to convert your audio recording before it could be published. Today, however, Apple, Inc. has made it really easy to publish your pod cast in the Apple iTunes store. Just save your pod cast as an MP3 or M4V audio file. Apple Inc, provides all of the gritty details such as using RSS feed, Tags, and publishing podcasts.
You can publish your pod cast to your own site, the iTunes site, or both.
To Publish Your Pod Cast To The iTunes Store:
1: Start the iTunes program.
|2: Open the iTunes Store. The iTunes store is located in the left column.|
3 Click on PodCasts The link will be found on the navigation tool bar at the top of the page.
4: Click the Submit a Pod Cast link which is found in the right column on the pod cast page.
TIP: You will need an iTunes Account before Apple allows you to publish a Pod Cast. You will also have to log into your iTunes account before submitting your pod cast. This helps Apple reduce spam.
Podcasts provide an opportunity for marketers to build their brand. Podcasts work because not everyone has time to sit and watch a video. Utilizing podcasts as a way to develop a brand enables writers to use audio to support visual in that listeners can be directed to other sources such as a blog. The technology behind making a pod cast is fairly straight forward. The investment is minimal, yet the impact can be huge.
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